Global Opportunities

Self-driving cars and increasing e-mobility in Hungary

Great potential within the Automotive Industry

Hungary’s automotive Industry is constantly growing with several possibilities for international investors and interests. Over 40 of the top 100 global OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) are suppliers in Hungary. All together there are more than 700 suppliers in the automotive industry in Hungary.

Electric car

Overview of the Hungarian automotive industry

In the Hungarian automotive industry more than 170 thousand people are employed, and 28% of the Hungarian industrial output is derived from this industry. The full spectrum of the automotive industry can be found in Hungary; not just production, but the research, development and services that provide for this sector. In 2017 the production value of the automotive industry amounted to EUR 26,1 billion and achieved an annual average growth of 13% between 2010 and 2017. Furthermore the automotive industry accounted for 28,7 % of manufacturing output.

Big brands within the industry

In the year of 2017 around 500.000 passenger cars were manufactured in Hungary. 91,8 % of the automotive industry’s output is exported, mainly to the EU market (87%). It accounts to 20% of the total Hungarian exports.

The 4 biggest OEMs are: Audi, Mercedes, Opel, Suzuki.

Audi has one of the world’s largest engine manufacturing plants in Győr, where CNG and E-Engines are produced. Robert Bosch is the largest industrial employer in Hungary and has the largest R&D centre in Budapest outside Germany. Continental has several activities in Hungary employing 8000 people. It has just opened its Center for Deep Machine Learning in Budapest.

Next projects which has been announced lately:

Mercedes made the biggest greenfield investment ever in Hungary, and it is now building its second plant worth EUR 1 billion in Kecskemét. The new plant is going to manufacture models of various vehicle architecture and drivetrain in a so-called "full-flex" - flexible production arrangement.

BMW will invest EUR 1 billion to build a new plant in Hungary.

Jaguar Land Rover confirms plans to create a technical engineering office in Hungary, opening in 2019. Nissan plans to develop its European financial centre in Budapest in 2019. The GMD Group has just launched its new investment in Dorog with 240 new employees producing different parts for cars (Opel, Lamborghini, Bentley).

Different type of government support is offered to the investors. These incentives include cash subsidies for investments, training, job creation, R&D, tax incentives – reduction of corporate tax, social tax, etc. Investors may apply for VIP cash subsidy with capacity expansion and technology-intensive investment projects.

Autonomous driving in Hungary

In the autonomous driving, Hungary became a HUB for testing: a new investment was realized, called Zalazone test track field:

  • it is a governmental investment, but open for all companies to use
  • it offers autonomous and electric vehicle test environment fusion with classic dynamic elements
  • it has R&D and an education platform
  • it has available development areas for companies
  • it is connected to the 5G high speed mobile network
  • it assures legal environment for AV public road tests

E-mobility concept

Hungary was the first in the CEE region to adopt an e-mobility concept offering direct and indirect incentives to promote e-mobility, by increasing the availability of the charging stations. Hungary is also becoming the largest EV battery manufacturer in Europe: E-mobility, e-engine production with companies such as: SK Innovation, Samsung SDI, GS Yuasa, Audi, Thyssenkrupp, BYD. The intention is to shift the Hungarian industry from production to R&D (from “produced in Hungary” to “invented in Hungary”), innovation, product development, where more and more professional engineers, and innovative companies are needed. Policies are focusing on technology intensive directions and automatization. A dual education system is provided for the companies in cooperation with the main universities in order to support the professional replacements.

Swiss companies are welcome

The automotive industry overall in Hungary shows a great development in the recent years. It is continuously open to new investors on both sides: production, R&D and supply chain. Swiss companies are welcome to connect to this industry, with all their expertise and innovation.

The Hungarian Chamber of Commerce together with the Hungarian Promotion Agency are continuously looking for new companies to increase the investors related to this sector, especially: the Innovation Hub focusing on E-mobility and Self-driving cars.

Swiss companies, suppliers related to the automotive industry are:

  • ABB Kft. – in Kecskemét
  • Phoenix Mecano, CabTec  - in Kecskemét
  • Autoneum – in Komárom
  • Adval Tech – in Szekszárd
  • Würth – in Budaörs
  • SFS – in Jánossomorja
  • Oerlikon - Székesfehérvár
  • Rehau - Újhartyán                                            
  • Gurit – Székesfehérvár

In the field of AI there are also many opportunities for new suppliers, since there is a continuous shift to autonomous production by robots and other systems.

Events in 2019 related to automotive industry:

How can you benefit

Would you like to know more about the automotive industry in Hungary? Our Senior Consultant Central Eastern Europe, Katalin Dreher-Hajnal, is happy to assist with further information, initial assessments and providing contacts.

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